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See What our Youths of the Year are Saying

Boys & Girls Clubs in Tennessee are full of talented Club members across the state who have been named local and state Youths of the Year. Our Club members have dedicated their time and energy to creating projects and volunteering at their local Clubs, assisting the community through service projects and making a difference in other’s lives. These influential youth have something to say and want their peers, community and the world to hear it.

See what Youths of the Year have to say:


web1_hattonKetron Hatton, Boys & Girls Clubs of Maury County, 2015 Tennessee State Youth of the Year:

“In America there are hundreds of statistics. [. . .] But, most important to me are those of African American males. Statistics say that only 52% of black males will graduate from high school. Statistics say that one out of six African American males will go to jail or prison. Statistics say, they say, he say, she say. No. I say, I will not be a part of those statistics.”



IMG_4196Cheyenne Gray, Boys & Girls Club of Greeneville & Greene County, 2015 Tennessee State Youth of the Year competitor:

“The Boys & Girls Club has shaped me into the person I am today. Because of the Club I have been given opportunities that I would have never dreamed possible all because of the caring staff at my Club. They took an interest in me and guided me when I had no one else to turn to. If I had questions or needed a shoulder to cry on, they were there. I owe my all to the Boys & Girls Club.”



Vinecia CrittendenVinceia Crittenden, Boys & Girls Clubs of Chattanooga, 2015 Tennessee State Youth of the Year competitor:

“When I think about the Boys & Girls Club, the first thing that comes to mind is a sense of family. The staff makes everyone feel welcome and cared for, and the Club has had a big influence on my life in a very positive way. Being the Youth of the Year opened my eyes to new experiences and challenges that I might not have gotten the opportunity otherwise.”




Ashley Heatherly, Boys & Girls Club of the Smoky Mountains, 2014 Tennessee State Youth of the Year:

“Joining the Boys & Girls Club is the best thing that ever happened to me. It saved my life. I owe every success I have to the Boys & Girls Club.”




WMay.Carlisha McKenzia.HP

Carlisha McKenzie, Boys & Girls Clubs of Chattanooga, 2014 Tennessee State Youth of the Year competitor:

“The Boys and Girls Club means three things to me. It means family, striving to be a better person in life and the Boys & Girls Club makes the world a better place. The Club is a mentor, and it opens a world of possibilities to youth. Boys and Girls Club has made it easier for me to reach my dream.”




Tavina Malone, Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Memphis, 2014 Tennessee State Youth of the Year competitor:

“The Boys & Girls Clubs has always been the place that has given me confidence and self-esteem to do anything. I can be myself at the Boys & Girls Clubs, and I know the Club staff and my friends believe in me. That’s the best feeling in the world.”




IMG_4205Whitney Andes, Boys & Girls Club of Elizabethton/Carter County, 2014 and 2015 Tennessee State Youth of the Year competitor:

“I did not come to the Club in search of character development & long-lasting relationships; I came to play Foosball and hang out with friends, but experiencing the Club’s support and compassion has molded me, teaching me to value acceptance, faithfulness and integrity above all else. I have learned success and what it means to be great. I have experienced volunteerism and have seen why civic involvement is an integral part of the American experience. My Club has shaped me into who I am today, and I yearn for a day that every child has the same opportunity to attend because I know that the Club can teach them the same lessons, helping them too discover their own potential and path to future success.”



Katelynn-tutoring.gifKatelynn Lemarr, Boys & Girls Clubs of the Tennessee Valley, 2013 Tennessee State Youth of the Year competitor:

“The Boys & Girls Club means a lot of things to me, things like mentoring and setting good examples for the children. It means… a place [for kids] to have fun, be able to be themselves, and feel safe.”